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RHAPSODY (OF FIRE)

Progressive Metal • Italy


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Rhapsody (of Fire) biography
RHAPSODY released their first album "Legendary Tales" in 1997. The Italian power metal band incorporate classical and baroque sounds into their music, a combination which proves to be very powerful. Each album fits into one ever-expanding storyline, "The Chronicles of Algalord", comparable to the great literary works of the fantasy genre if we deem musical imagery as viable for such purpose as the constructs of effective writing. Certainly the band create the same scale of setting, indeed the same epic atmosphere in their fantasy work as may be found in such literary tales as the masterworks of Tolkien.

It is very hard to draw legitimate comparisons between RHAPSODY and other bands. Some cite similarities with THERION, who also record with full orchestra and choir. THERION however combine metal (in some cases, death metal) with the Wagner school of classical music, creating large-scale Nordic soundscapes. RHAPSODY bring together power metal with medieval, baroque and classical period music; Vivaldi, Bach, Paganini, Verdi are all major influences and the result is a distinctly Italian flavour. Ultimately, RHAPSODY are unique.

The members of RHAPSODY are Alex Staropoli (harpsichord, keyboard, piano), Luca Turilli (guitars), Fabio Leone (vocals), Alex Holzwarth (Drums) and Patrice Guers (bass). All may be considered virtuosos on their respective instruments. In addition to this 5-piece core, a great many other musicians, vocalists and even actors have collaborated over the course of what are now seven albums.

Following the release of "Symphony of Enchanted Lands II - The Dark Secret", RHAPSODY were forced for legal reasons to change their name, opting instead for the title RHAPSODY OF FIRE. On the subject of that album, it is the manifestation of all the experience the band have gained producing five albums previous to it and is without doubt a masterpiece. Christopher Lee narrates much of the storyline in a diverse album that will appeal to a greater portion than merely the fan of the power metal genre. I go as far as to recommend it and the band to all who enjoy first class musicianship and skillful composition.

: : : "Ktrout" : : :

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RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) discography


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RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.75 | 90 ratings
Legendary Tales
1997
3.71 | 95 ratings
Symphony Of Enchanted Lands
1998
3.70 | 76 ratings
Dawn Of Victory
2000
3.53 | 49 ratings
Rain Of A Thousand Flames
2001
3.37 | 64 ratings
Power of the Dragonflame
2002
3.70 | 79 ratings
Symphony of Enchanted Lands II - The Dark Secret
2004
3.60 | 58 ratings
Triumph Or Agony
2006
3.79 | 75 ratings
Frozen Tears Of Angels
2010
3.64 | 72 ratings
From Chaos To Eternity
2011
3.58 | 19 ratings
Ascending to Infinity (Luca Turilli's Rhapsody)
2012
4.17 | 6 ratings
Dark Wings Of Steel
2013

RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.60 | 11 ratings
Live In Canada 2005 - The Dark Secret
2006
5.00 | 1 ratings
Live: From Chaos To Eternity
2013

RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.07 | 8 ratings
Visions From The Enchanted Lands
2007

RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.51 | 9 ratings
Tales From The Emerald Sword Saga
2004

RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 1 ratings
Land Of Immortals
1994
4.00 | 1 ratings
Eternal Glory
1995
3.60 | 11 ratings
Emerald Sword
1998
3.81 | 12 ratings
Holy Thunderforce
2000
3.18 | 11 ratings
The Dark Secret
2004
3.16 | 6 ratings
The Magic Of The Wizard's Dream
2005
2.68 | 23 ratings
The Cold Embrace Of Fear
2010

RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Rain Of A Thousand Flames by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.53 | 49 ratings

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Rain Of A Thousand Flames
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by SevDawg

3 stars RHAPSODY OF FIRE "Rain Of A Thousand Flames" is the only album I have from this band. I'm not a huge fan of RHAPSODY OF FIRE because I find it to be cheesy power metal (castles and dragons, mythology, things in that vein), but some of the tracks on this album are musically impressive.

"The Wizard's Last Rhymes" is a song that blew me away. One of my favorite classical pieces is Antonín Dvořák's symphony 9. "The Wizard's Last Rhymes" uses the 4th movement of that symphony and makes for some epic symphonic power metal.

Objectively this album has ambition. I'm not a big fan of RHAPSODY OF FIRE but I do love symphonic / power metal, and I'd recommend it to anyone who appreciates those genres.

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 Ascending to Infinity (Luca Turilli's Rhapsody) by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.58 | 19 ratings

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Ascending to Infinity (Luca Turilli's Rhapsody)
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Well, this is an interesting experiment. In a stark contrast to the tedious wrangling over the Queensryche name, Luca Turilli and his former bandmates in Rhapsody have decided to coexist: the original band will continue under the Rhapsody of Fire name, whilst Luca will produce new music in the Rhapsody style as band leader of Luca Turilli's Rhapsody, and both bands will be considered to be official parts of the Rhapsody family.

It's an interesting experiment, but I can't help but think that - on the Luca side of the equation at least - something is lost as a result of the divorce. Turilli continues to push the whole Hollywood metal style he developed with his former bandmates on the legendary Rhapsody concept albums, but without a cohesive concept to hang the album structure on it feels a little unfocused, and whilst the sound presented is diverse it doesn't always cater to Turilli's talents. (It often feels rather light on Turilli's guitar work, which to me is the main draw for his material). It's competent enough stuff, but somehow it's missing the magic.

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 From Chaos To Eternity by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.64 | 72 ratings

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From Chaos To Eternity
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Rhapsody's second multiple-concept album epic comes to a close which feels more exhausted than triumphant here. Don't get me wrong, this is a more or less solid Rhapsody album that keeps me happily entertained across its running time, but I can't help but be left with the impression that Rhapsody are getting diminishing returns out of their formula. To be honest, the only really major departures the Dark Secret Saga has made compared with the Emerald Sword Saga are as follows:

- Christopher Lee narrates the Dark Sword Saga. - The Emerald Sword Saga doesn't quite have a symphonic-and-narrative-focused released as The Cold Embrace of Fear.

And, erm, that's about it. Apparently the band have decided that this will be the last of their conceptual epics, and perhaps some time backing away from the expectations the Emerald Sword Saga built up will be good for recharging their creative batteries. I'm also interested to see what Rhapsody of Fire and Luca Turilli do now they've had their amicable parting of the ways. But as far as this album goes, it's solid stuff, but I know this Rhapsody lineup are capable of better and they don't quite deliver the triumphant conclusion I was hoping for.

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 The Cold Embrace Of Fear by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2010
2.68 | 23 ratings

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The Cold Embrace Of Fear
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Huh - this is an odd one. Recorded during the sessions for The Frozen Tears of Angels, this multi-part epic tells an important part of the story of the Dark Secret Saga - it's not a side-tale in the same way that Rain of a Thousand Flames was to the Emerald Sword Saga. On balance, I think the band made the right call in leaving this off that album, since it is a major departure from Rhapsody's usual compositional style which wouldn't fit well on that album, or indeed on any of Rhapsody's other releases.

The multi-act song here relies far more on sweeping orchestral sections and extended narrated portions than any other Rhapsody album, to the point where it includes full-blown radio play sections. On top of that, there's more or less none of the band's usual energetic power metal excursions to moderate the pace and aid the flow, to the point where it feels like an experiment in creating more purely symphonic metal than Rhapsody are known for. It's an interesting attempt, but in all honesty I think they do a lot better when they sound like Rhapsody.

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 From Chaos To Eternity by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.64 | 72 ratings

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From Chaos To Eternity
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Second Life Syndrome
Collaborator Math Rock Team

3 stars What did I just listen to? Rhapsody of Fire has always been an anomaly for me. They are the epitome of "geeky" prog metal (as some have called it), and almost seem like a soundtrack to Dungeons and Dragons. I thought I would give them a try, though; because I am certainly a big fan of fantasy.

The thing is: I've heard this all before now. This music sounds just like Symphony X, but with a little more emphasis on keyboards. The pace is extremely fast, and the technical bar is set very high---this isn't easy music to perform. Also, only about half the album is in English. The rest is in Latin (?), I believe.

However, I did find myself enjoying it. In fact, I enjoyed it more than some Symphony X albums, such as "The Odyssey". While much of the album seems like speedy power metal, there is a certain fantasy charm to the whole deal: a great deal of sobriety to the performances. These guys tell us fantastical stories without missing a beat. I think that's pretty dang impressive, as sometimes the story seems a little ridiculous.

The album is certainly good. The production is outstanding, and the music is well done. This isn't totally my cup of tea, but I could definitely see myself revisiting this band every once in a while.

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 Frozen Tears Of Angels by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.79 | 75 ratings

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Frozen Tears Of Angels
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The Frozen Tears of Angels is an exciting return to form for Rhapsody after the slightly bland Triumph or Agony. The folky influences they had so far been neglecting in the Dark Secret albums make a welcome return, and they even dabble in some extreme metal sounds, with some honest to goodness shrieked vocals making an appearance. Luca's guitar work is the star of the show once again and the band as a whole invest substantially more passion into their music than was evident on Triumph or Agony. Clearly, the sobbing angels are in their heaven and all's right with Rhapsody again.

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 Triumph Or Agony by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.60 | 58 ratings

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Triumph Or Agony
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Rhapsody's first album after an unfortunate trademark dispute prompted them to add "of Fire" to their name (but they'll always simply be Rhapsody to me) feels like a bit of a stumble to me. Perhaps they were thrown a little off their game by the unwanted legal pressures, but it seems to rely a bit more on flabby orchestral filler than Rhapsody ever have before, and the band's metal passages don't soar the way they do in previous albums. They're still just about tight enough to keep my attention, and hopefully now that the sinister Seventh Book has been discovered in the story the action will pick up, but as far as Triumph or Agony is concerned my answer is "neither" - it might not be agony to listen to, but it's certainly not a musical triumph in its own right.

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 Symphony of Enchanted Lands II - The Dark Secret by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.70 | 79 ratings

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Symphony of Enchanted Lands II - The Dark Secret
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Featuring the legendary Christopher Lee on narrator duties, Symphony of Enchanted Lands II begins the second major Rhapsody saga - The Dark Secret, a sequel to the Emerald Sword Saga which had dominated their previous albums. The shift to a new saga seems to have been accompanied by a shift in compositional approach - whilst previous Rhapsody albums were very busy affairs (and indeed could be accused of being over-busy at points), here the band give the various elements of their music a bit more room to breathe - the symphonic parts get a chance to sprawl a bit further, but there's still enough power metal excitement to prevent things from getting boring. Overall, then, the band seem to be experimenting with slightly slower pacing here, which may turn off some long-term fans but for my part I think it shows their continued commitment to ongoing musical development.

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 Power of the Dragonflame  by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.37 | 64 ratings

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Power of the Dragonflame
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The Emerald Sword Saga comes to a valiant conclusion on Rhapsody's Power of the Dragonflame, as the band roll out an album which touches on all the different styles they'd tried out in the preceding episodes. If you have listened to the earlier chapters then by now you should know whether you like or loathe Rhapsody and their "everything crazier than everything else" approach - and if you like them, this won't disappoint one bit. Indeed, with the band apparently trying to take a slightly more measured and subtle approach with the sequel saga (The Dark Secret series, starting with Symphony of Enchanted Lands II) this album marks the end of the bombastic, over-the-top first phase of Rhapsody.

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 Rain Of A Thousand Flames by RHAPSODY (OF FIRE) album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.53 | 49 ratings

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Rain Of A Thousand Flames
Rhapsody (of Fire) Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Although it's as long as a full-blown album, Rain of a Thousand Flames is not regarded as a full release by Rhapsody - as they explain it, it's an EP release which isn't a full chapter in the Emerald Sword Saga because it tells a side story that isn't essential to the main narrative. Nonetheless, it's one of my favourite Rhapsody releases because it describes how, away from the quest of the Saga's protagonist, the powers of darkness are just running riot across the land. Consequently, the album has a decidedly harder edge and darker tone than is usual for Rhapsody's music, which spices proceedings up nicely and continues the band's tradition of not resting on their laurels and shaking things up with each new release.

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